Frequently Asked Questions

General Information

PAF Personnel: UM Investigators & Research Administrators

Principal Investigators

Working with Proposals in eRPM

Making & Submitting Changes in eRPM

Review of Proposals


General Information

Getting Started?

  • Complete the Getting Started Checklist which includes information on:
    • Minimum system requirements
    • Obtaining a uniqname and Kerberos password or Friends Account
    • Training (e.g., courses, reference materials)
    • Configuring your e-mail to receive eResearch system notifications.
  • Use the Sandbox to practice working in eRPM.


  • For questions about Unit business policy/requirements for creating research proposal, contact your Research Unit Liaison

  • For technical support (e.g., navigation, connectivity, and system errors), contact the ITS Service Center between 7 AM and 6 PM Monday - Friday, 1 PM and 5 PM Sunday (email only)
    Phone: (734) 764-HELP (4-4357)

  • For submission or sponsor specific questions, contact a Project Representative
    -- Phone: (734) 764-5500
    -- Fax: (734) 763-4053, 764-8510

PAF Personnel

How do I add UM Investigators (e.g., Principal Investigator) to a PAF?

Add UM Investigators, such as the UM Principal Investigator, for the proposal in question 2.3 of the PAF by:

  1. Adding the person
  2. Selecting if he/she has permission to edit the PAF and/or SF424 ( forms)
  3. Selecting his/her role on the project
  4. Indicating if he/she is Senior/Key to the proposal
  5. Adding Appointment(s) for the person

Learn more about UM Investigators and get detailed directions...

Who is considered an "Other Non-faculty Investigator" on a PAF?

This role applies to personnel who fit the definition of investigator, but do not hold a faculty appointment.

I'm an Research Administrator on a project, but I am absent. How does my colleague in the same office get access to my projects?

He/she needs to be added as Administrative Personnel to the projects in order to be able to access these projects in your absence. Learn more...

UM Principal Investigator

I am a Principal Investigator for a Proposal, how do I sign the PAF/Conflict of Interest Statement?

From Display PAF Summary, click the Sign PAF button.
From the Project Workspace for a PAF, click the Sign PAF activity.

Learn more...

How do I request that the UM Principal Investigator signs the PAF/Conflict of Interest Statement?

Call or email the UM PI to let him/her know that he/she needs to sign the PAF/Conflict of Interest Statement.
Use the "Post a Comment for the Entire Project" activity to send the UM PI a system email requesting them to sign the PAF. The e-mail will have a direct link to the PAF Workspace. The PI will not have to find the PAF in their Home Workspace.
Learn how to Post a Comment for the Entire Project Team...

Note: Many units will not review the PAF unless the PI has signed the PAF/Conflict of Interest Statement.

Working with Proposals in eRPM

Who can edit & view PAFs/proposals in eRPM?

UM Investigators and Administrative Personnel listed on the PAF who have been assigned permission to edit (edit rights) to the PAF are the only people who can edit a proposal during the proposal preparation state.

Non-UM Investigators listed on the PAF cannot view or edit a PAF.

Anyone listed on a PAF (proposal) and its associated unit Reviewers are able to view a proposal.

Reviewers can make changes or request changes when the PAF/proposal is routed for internal unit review.

Is there an easy way to print my PAF/proposal?

You can print any page of the PAF Worksheet using the print button on each page.
The easiest way to print the entire PAF is to use the Display PAF Summary. It includes all information entered on the PAF Worksheet and attachments.
Learn how to use the PAF Summary.

Will I be able to copy a PAF to create another one?

Yes, UM Investigators and administrative personnel with edit rights on a PAF can "clone" that PAF in the eRPM system no matter what state it is in (e.g., Unit Review, Active, Cancelled). Learn how to clone.

Who has access to sponsored project documents?

ORSP, UM Investigators, Administrative Personnel, and relevant unit Reviewers have access to proposals, PAFs, routing and approval status information, awards and PANs/PACs.

Can I restrict access to sponsored project documents?

You may restrict access to specific project documents from some UM Investigator roles or administrative personnel. You cannot restrict access from the UM PI or Primary Administrative Contact. Reviewers and ORSP can view all sponsored project documents. Learn more...

Why can't I find an activity on my PAF/Project Workspace?

What activity (action) you can complete for a PAF depends on both its state and your role. If you do not see an activity:

  • Check the PAF State

  • Check your role
    - Some activities are available for unit Reviewers only.

  • Check to see if you are the Primary Research Administrator or UM PI
    - Certain activities can only be completed by the people fulfilling these roles on the PAF. E.g., only the UM PI or the Primary Research Administrator can route a PAF for unit review and approval.

How do I associate a subcontract with my PAF?

Adding a subcontract (SubK) to a PAF/project has multiple steps in eRPM. For full system instructions, see the Enter a Subcontract in eRPM procedure.

Proposal Preparation:

  1. Identify that the project will include a subcontract on the PAF.
  2. Enter high-level information (e.g., subcontracting organization, SubK investigator, etc.) and upload Letter of Commitment or Notes (as applicable).

After the U-M project is awarded:

  1. Enter details and upload required documentation (e.g., budget) for the Office of Contract Administration (OCA) to create the contract.

Once added, the subcontract appears under the Subcontracts tab in the PAF Workspace and under the All SUBKs tab in eRPM Home Workspace.

Making & Submitting Changes

Who can change the PAF?

The PAF can be changed the by the PI/Project Team, Reviewers, and ORSP. Reviewers and ORSP can request that the Project Team make changes to the PAF.

How do I know if someone has made changes to the PAF?

Anytime that changes are made to a PAF by a Reviewer or the ORSP, the Primary Research Administrator and the UM PI receive a system email notification.

If the PAF is changed after the unit has approved it, a system email is sent to the department contact notifying him/her of the change.

All changes made to the PAF are tracked in a change log. Learn how to use the change log...

How does the PI & Project Team make changes to the PAF?

The Project Team can make and submit changes to the PAF until it is routed to the ORSP for review.

  • Only the Primary Research Administrator or UM PI can complete the "Project Team Make Changes" and "Project Team Submit Changes" activities.
  • Once a PAF is open for editing anyone with edit rights can make changes to the PAF.

Once the PAF is in a DRDA Review State, the Project Team must contact ORSP to make change. ORSP will either make the requested changes or unlock the PAF so the Project Team can make changes.

Learn how to make & submit PAF changes... in eRPM

Can I use eRPM for applications?

If the forms for your opportunity are available in eRPM, your submission can be assembled, routed, and submitted within the system. Learn more...

Review of Proposals

Why can't I route a PAF for approval?

To route a PAF for approval, you must either be the Primary Research Administrator or UM PI. Learn more about managing the Primary Research Administrator...

Do I have to individually add each person who needs to review the PAF from other departments?

No, you just need to complete the PAF. The information you enter about UM Investigators, space & budget will determine who the PAF is routed to for unit approval.

Routing information (e.g., departments, review status) appears in a table on the PAF Workspace after the PAF is routed for unit approval.

How do I look up outside interest disclosure status?

For PI & Project Team and unit Reviewers: verify disclosure status by clicking View Disclosure Information under Manage Data.

Certain sponsors, such as Public Health Service (PHS) agencies, require that those with a UM Investigator role to disclose any outside interests with external organizations before the PAF can be submitted, and that any conflict of interest be managed prior to the award.


What systems do I use once my project has been awarded?

Post-award management (e.g., tracking expenditures, purchasing, HR functions, etc.) is completed in other ITS systems (e.g., M-Pathways Financials). eRPM provides a repository for the PAF, proposal, award and award supplements/modifications, and PANs and PACs.

Who receives PANs/PACs?

PAN and PAC award notifications are sent via email to investigators and campus administrators, specifically:

  • UM Principal Investigator
  • Sponsor Principal Investigator
  • Participating Investigators with Specified Effort
  • Administrative Contacts (all administrators listed on proposal or project)
  • Any person (or group email address) listed as the PAN/PAC Notifiers for a unit (department) that was required to review the PAF.
    Learn more...

Where do I find my PANs/PACs?

From your Home Workspace look for your awarded projects

  • PI & Project Team - View awarded projects on the "Active" tab.
  • Reviewer - View awarded projects on the "Active/Closed/Turned Down/Withdrawn" tab.

On the Project Workspace, you can view all PANs/PACs (award notices)
Learn more...